Have you suffered a blockage yet? I hope not because they are pretty darn painful even the partial ones. I asked in Making Ostomies Cool a Facebook group that I help to admin; what they have found to help relieve blockages and some of the solutions were quite varied.
So what was the question and the solutions?
What Are Your Tips For A Blockages?
- Fizzy Pop – 29
- Massaging The Area – 23
- Bath – 12
- Wait It Out – 8
- Hot Shower – 6
- Gently Pressing The Intestine – 4
- Apple Juice – 4
- Hot Water Bottle – 4
- Heat Packs – 2
- Surgery – 2
- Senna Laxatives – 1
- Mushy Peas – 1
- Blowing Your Nose – 1
- Walking And A Cup Of Tea – 1
- Cold Energy Drink – 1
I seriously do not recommend using laxatives unless told otherwise by your stoma nurse as I am lead to believe it could in worst case scenarios is a perforation in your bowel.
You can get blockages from food – whether you haven’t chewed enough or have eaten something that doesn’t digest very well for example nuts, sweetcorn or mushrooms. I actually tend to get them from onions but onions were the bane of my life before surgery too! In fact I got them quite frequently when I was pregnant as Jacob often decided to use my intestines as a pillow!
You can get full and partial blockages; the easiest way to be able to tell that you have a blockage is your output will stop or become just water. But your stoma can become swollen, you can get pains radiating across your stomach, bloating, nausea and vomiting. Due to the high output you are at higher risk of dehydration so staying well hydrated if you have a blockage will help tremendously.
If you have a blockage advice is usually –
- Stop solid food
- Drink plenty of liquids such as water, Coke or tea
- Don’t use laxatives
- Cutting your bag a little larger than normal in case the stoma swells up
- Massage the abdomen and the area around the stoma as this might help to push the blockage out
- Lying on your back, with your knees to your chest and rocking from side to side
- Having a hot bath
If these don’t help the blockage to pass within 2 hours your need to seek medical attention via A&E or your Stoma Care Nurse!